[W]ork to repair St John’s Bridge over the M6 near Carlisle, which was left damaged after it was struck by a high vehicle, started on Monday night (13 March).
The bridge carries Houghton Road North over the motorway between junction 43 for Carlisle and junction 44 for Carlisle North. The 2 week repair project involves full overnight closures of the southbound carriageway – from 8pm to 6am each night – between junction 44 and junction 43.
Highways England project manager Paul Hupton said: “The collision, several months ago, took a large chunk of concrete out of the bridge deck, exposing the steel reinforcement. There is no imminent risk to motorway users but the steel will corrode if the bridge deck is left unrepaired, resulting in concrete becoming loose and posing a safety risk to M6 traffic.
“We have looked closely at how best to do the work from a road user and contractor safety point of view and this is why we have opted for the overnight carriageway closures. While the diversion routes are able to absorb the relatively low volumes of traffic travelling overnight it would be worthwhile drivers allowing an extra 20 minutes for their journeys.”
During the overnight closures, drivers will need to leave the southbound M6 at junction 44 and use the eastbound A689 towards Brampton and then the westbound A69 back to junction 43.
During the day, the southbound carriageway will be reduced to 2 narrowed lanes with a 50mph speed limit in place. The lane 1 closure will be in place to allow the concrete used in the overnight repairs to harden during the day.
The local road, Houghton Road North, which uses the bridge to cross over the motorway, will be closed around the clock during the work.